We knew this day would come

Current Events & News | 06/03/2019

Parasa Chanramy
Policy & Implementation Director

We knew this day would come.

Last week, opponents of the Student Success Act filed a referendum to repeal funding for the Act.

This is not okay.

Repealing funding for the Student Success Act jeopardizes investments in Measure 98, early childhood education, and K-12.

Join Stand leaders across Oregon in helping to defend the Student Success Act with just one click below!

Defend the SSA

We also have two priority bills that are still stuck in Ways and Means: HB 5015 and SB 800.

  • Pass the grant-in-aid budget in HB 5015
    Lawmakers still need to pass the grant-in-aid budget that covers base funding for a number of vital education investments, including a portion of Measure 98’s funding ($170 million of the total $303.2 million), along with base funding for early learning programs and vitally important equity initiatives like the African American Student Success plan and the Tribal Attendance program.
  • Improve credit transfers with SB 800
    As our state invests in college level opportunities that allow high school students to earn college credits, we also need to ensure those credits are honored by public colleges and universities. Right now, graduating seniors face inconsistent, unclear systems and polices when trying to get credit for the work they’ve done, and lawmakers can help fix this situation by passing SB 800.

Help these bills advance by contacting Ways and Means Committee members today!

Email Lawmakers

As always, if you’d like to receive more updates, talk about what’s happening in Salem, and learn more about how you can help, please hop on my weekly calls Friday at noon during session.

What: Weekly Legislative Update Calls

When: Every Friday from noon to 12:30pm (until June 30, or whenever session ends)

Tune in by phone: 408-740-3766 (Access code: 669 855 1592 #)
Join the presentation/video: https://zoom.us/my/stand.spare

Key updates from last week:

The House passed a modest PERS bill (SB 1049) on Thursday by a very narrow margin (31 yes votes; 29 no votes). The bill heads to the Governor’s desk next.

Once enacted, SB 1049 will protect all benefits earned by public employees to date. It will also:

  • Reinstate employee contributions to support the PERS pension plan. Tier 1 and 2 employees would redirect 2.5% of their pay, while Oregon Public Service Retirement Plan members would redirect 0.75%;
  • Cap final average salary for pension calculations at $195,000;
  • Extend the repayment schedule for the system’s liabilities by adding 2 years; and
  • Dedicate $100 million and future sports betting revenue to set up a state matching fund for local governments to pay off their PERS debts.

This new plan is estimated to save state agencies, universities, school districts, participating cities, counties, and special districts between $1.2 to $1.8 billion a biennium (beginning with the 2021-23 biennium through the 2033-35 biennium).

The Education Subcommittee on Ways and Means had a presentation on the Educator Advancement Council and the State Apprenticeship Expansion Grant.The Senate Education Committee heard two presentations: one on federal education issues, and another on diversity, equity, and inclusion in Oregon public schools. You can watch those presentations here.

The House Education Committee did not convene last week.

What’s on the docket this week:

The Joint Committee on Student Success may meet again this week (note: they have not posted their schedules yet).

The Education Subcommittee on Ways and Means will review, and work budget bills related to Teacher Standards and Practices Commission, Farm-to-School, Oregon Promise, and the Higher Education Coordinating Commission.

The Senate Education Committee will hold informational meetings on civics education and school choice. The House Education Committee has not posted their schedule yet.

For more details about what’s happening during session, tune in every Friday during session at NOON for a recap and preview of each week.

Tune in by phone: 408-740-3766 (Access code: 669 855 1592 #)
Join the presentation/video: https://zoom.us/my/stand.spare

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